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Anthony de Mello

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During the Meigi era two well-known teachers lived in Tokyo; as unlike each other as it was possible to be. One, Unsho, a Shingon teacher, was a man who meticulously observed every one of Buddha’s precepts. He rose well before dawn, retired when the night was young, ate nothing after the sun had passed its zenith and drank no intoxicating drinks. The other. Tanzan was a philosophy professor at the Imperial Todai University. He observed no precepts for he ate when he felt like eating and slept even during the day time. One day Unsho visited Tanzan and found him in his cups. This was quite scandalous since not even a drop is supposed to touch the tongue of a Buddhist. “Hello, my friend,” Tanzan exclaimed. “Will you come in and have a drink with me?” Unsho was outraged. But he said in a controlled voice, “I never drink.” “One who does not drink is not human, surely,” said Tanzan. This time Unsho lost his temper. “Do you mean to say I am inhuman because I do not touch what the Buddha explicitly forbade? If I am not human, what am I?” “A Buddha,” said Tanzan happily. 🙂 Tanzan’s manner of dying was as ordinary as was his manner of living. On the last day of his life he wrote sixty postcards, each of which read; I am departing from this world This is my last announcement. Tanzan. July 27, 1892. He asked a friend to mail these cards for him then quietly passed away. The Sufi Junaid of Baghdad says, “The good-natured sensualist is better than the bad-tempered saint.” 🙂
glauce tipped:
😁 Big smiles for Tanzan!
petergec replied:
😁